It is over nine years after the Sandy Hook shooting, but families of victims of the Sandy Hook shooting were finally awarded $73 million from Remington Arms, which manufactured the assault weapon used to kill 26 at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012.
Remington Arms itself is bankrupt, but four insurance companies will be responsible for the settlement.
Lawsuits have been stymied by the federal Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), but the Sandy Hook legal team found chinks in that armor.
A focus of the suit was based on the company’s marketing of extremely lethal products to young men. The settlement also requires public release of internal company documents.
An incredibly huge impact of the settlement is that the gun industry and their insurers now know that they are not immune from being held financially responsible for irresponsible marketing and other acts.
Unfortunately, Colorado enacted a prohibition on firearms industry lawsuits in 2000 that is actually even more restrictive than the federal PLCAA law.
Sandy and Lonnie Phillips, whose daughter was killed in the Aurora shooting sued Lucky Gunner, which sold thousands of rounds of ammunition to the Aurora shooter. Due to the state law, they lost their suit at considerable cost to them. The Phillips consequently had to declare bankruptcy.
It is past time that we repeal that 2000 law. A bill is in the works.